NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 S1.02-9217
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Active Microwave Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Low-Cost Beamforming SiGe MMIC Receivers at mm-Wave

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
NxGen Electronics, Inc.
9771 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., Suite C
San Diego, CA 92124 - 1300
(858) 430-1130

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Don Hayashigawa
9771 Clairemont Mesa Blvd Suite C
San Diego, CA 92124 - 1324
(858) 309-6619 Extension :3014

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 4

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The goal of this project is to perform technology research and development to integrate phase shifters and other needed electronics for electronically steered mmWave beamforming phased array Receivers at 35.6 GHz and 94 GHz so that the size of the Receiver package is commensurate with the antenna array. At these frequencies, the current state-of-the-art in technology for receiver or T/R module designs are not feasible. To achieve this goal, multiple array elements must be combined and processed into one integrated electronics package. The project will draw on NxGEN Electronics' high density/high frequency packaging and interconnect experience and Liner Signal's RFIC product baseline designs and their experience for low cost commercial satellite communications terminals. The design target is 16 phase shifters and supporting functionality, including low noise amplifiers, combiners, downconverters, and digital beamformer control logic integrated onto a single RFIC. The result will be unprecedented size reduction for phased array antennas at these frequencies. key aspects of the solution proposed is that the RFIC design will include ESD protection, package-ready impedance matching, and other enhancements needed to support a deployable, robust, mission-ready antenna system.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA/JPL has ongoing mission plans for numerous critical earth observing and planetary experiments and data collection. Many of them have in common the need for phased array radars optimized for specific frequencies, small size, low cost, and high functionality. For some sensors, an operating frequency of 94 GHz reduces water absorption effects and enables key remote sensing science capabilities. Examples of U.S. satellite sensors currently operating in the 94 GHz range are the Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AMSU) on one NASA satellite (Aqua) and four NOAA (15-18) satellites and the Special Sensor Microwave Imager Sounder (SSMI/S) on Department of Defense satellite F-16. Satellites operating at these frequencies are currently designed and built around discrete components or low functionality ASIC circuits resulting in high cost, large size, and reduced scientific capability.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
A successful technology development does not guarantee market success. This takes a team of marketing and sales personnel to be effective as well. NxGEN Electronics continues to develop its Marketing and Sales organization supported by field offices of manufacturer's representatives. It is clear to NxGEN Electronics that success in Phases I & II would open many doors in DOD, where NxGEN Electronics currently experiences 50% of its revenue, with major ongoing projects within NASA, Lockheed, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, and Sierra Nevada Corp with their radar projects.
In addition to these contractual relationships, based on the specifications agreed upon in Phase I NxGEN Electronics would notify its customer based of pending mmWave Receiver module developments to seek expansion of the application base. The performance goals set for Phase II will include consideration of these new opportunities.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.)
Circuits (including ICs; for specific applications, see e.g., Communications, Networking & Signal Transport; Control & Monitoring, Sensors)
Models & Simulations (see also Testing & Evaluation)
Spacecraft Instrumentation & Astrionics (see also Communications; Control & Monitoring; Information Systems)

Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:43